Is it time for me to start hammering out an obituary for Microsoft Windows? The headline, "Microsoft sees end of Windows era" was enough to make me look twice and start imagining a world without Vista, system crashes and the blue screen of death.
Software Development Times has reportedly seen some of Microsoft's internal documents describing a technology code-named "Midori," which is supposed to be Microsoft's answer to virtual computing as the Web moves beyond information and into computing. Microsoft is being pretty tight-lipped about Midori, saying publicly that it's one of many projects in incubation stage and that it's too early to comment.
Among the details from the SDTimes piece:
At the presentation layer, Microsoft is making a clean break from the existing Windows GUI model, where applications must update their display on one and only one thread at a time, and the associated problems that affect OS stability and make it more difficult to write multithreaded applications.
The Midori documents indicate that the company has not decided what user interface abstractions are appropriate when applications cut across boundaries, or how to combine the best qualities of rich client applications and Web applications.
The whole project is very hush-hush but I suspect that we'll start hearing more about it soon. Microsoft is behind the game in virtualization. Last week, during an earnings call, VWare announced plans to give away ESXi, the "platform" or "operating system" that powers its lineup of virtualization software products. Think of it as Microsoft giving away Windows and then selling Office or the Web browser. It's a good way for VMWare to get a jump-start on its competitors and try to build a loyal following before Microsoft has a chance to take Midori out of the incubator.